A 21-year-old man is on remand for the murder of a Georgia gun store owner, his wife and their teenage grandson, who visited them on spring break.
Police have charged Jacob Christian Muse, 21, of College Park, with three counts of malicious murder, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said in a news release Friday.
Last Friday, Coweta County Coroner Richard Hawk, 51, made the gruesome discovery at his parents’ shooting range, Lock Stock & Barrel, in Grantville, 50 miles southwest of Atlanta.
Arriving at the store around 8pm, he found the lifeless bodies of his parents Thomas and Evelyn Hawk, both aged 75, and their 18-year-old son Luke, who was visiting his grandparents over spring break and helping out in the store.
The Hawks had operated Lock Stock & Barrel for nearly 30 years. A sign at the front proudly proclaims that it is American owned and operated.
Her teenage grandson was on spring break at the time and was helping his grandparents in the shop.
Police charged 21-year-old College Park resident Jacob Christian Muse (pictured) with three counts of malicious murder, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said
Last week Richard Hawk found the lifeless bodies of his parents Thomas and Evelyn Hawk, both 75, (pictured together) and their son Luke, 18, who was visiting his grandparents
18-year-old Luke (pictured) was on spring break at the time, helping his grandparents around the shop
Investigators said up to 40 guns and the shooting range surveillance camera were also stolen.
Muse was committed to the Coweta County Jail, officials said. Authorities did not release any further information about his arrest, and it was not immediately clear if Muse had an attorney who could comment.
Earlier this week, police cleared the 911 call in which Hawk told a dispatcher the store was “locked down” and he couldn’t get inside to help his son, who could see he was bleeding, 11alivecom reported.
Hawk begins the brief call by asking the dispatcher to get officers on business.
“I think someone robbed us and probably shot my family… oh my god,” he says.
“The door is closed, the door is locked, everything is locked. I see blood coming from my son – I see blood coming from my son. I can’t tell if someone’s dead or alive or what, but they don’t move, they don’t look like they’re breathing,” he tells the dispatcher.
He tells the dispatcher he believes his parents were also at the store and asked the dispatcher to send someone as soon as possible.
“My parents are supposed to be here too, get someone here quickly.”
When the dispatcher asks him if he can revive his son, he says he can’t come in to help.
“I can’t even get in the door. Tell someone to bring lock cutters because I don’t have my keys.”
Eventually, the dispatcher asks Hawk if he knows who did it, and he says he doesn’t before hanging up the call.
‘No, like I said – I’m – I don’t know, the door is closed, everything is closed, oh my god.’
The Hawks had operated Lock Stock & Barrel for nearly 30 years. A sign on the front proudly proclaims that it is “American Owned and Operated” (Thomas pictured)
The triple murder shocked the small Georgia community, and family members organized a GoFundMe to help meet funeral expenses
Earlier this week, police released the 911 call, with Hawk telling a dispatcher that the store was “locked down.”
The Hawk family had close ties to the community, which made the crime all the more shocking, Chief Steve Whitlock said
After the murders, the Hawk family released a statement asking for privacy to mourn.
“Three beloved members of the Hawk family were abducted too soon. We are heartbroken and our loss seems insurmountable. Please respect our family’s privacy during this time. With God we must mourn and heal as a family,” the family said.
The Hawk family also thanked the community for sticking together after the horrific crime.
“It’s so meaningful that so many in our community appreciate her as much as we do and want to help shine a light in the darkness,” the statement continued. “Tommy, Evelyn and Luke will always be in our hearts.”
The Hawks had close ties to the community, which made the crime all the more mysterious, Chief Steve Whitlock said.
“They were just nice, easygoing people,” Whitlock told reporters. “It’s really hard for me to understand what happened here.”
The triple murder shocked the small Georgia community, and family members organized a GoFundMe to help meet funeral expenses.
The front entrance to the Lock Stock & Barrel Shooting Gun Range where three members of the Hawk family were murdered last Friday
Police officers are investigating the scene of a fatal robbery at the Lock Stock & Barrel Shooting Range late Friday, April 8, 2022
“Tommy, Evelyn and Luke Hawk. Their lives were taken at ages 75, 75 and 18,” said the fundraiser, started by granddaughter Felicia Walker. “They were such amazing people who believed in the Lord and loved with everything they had. Anyone would give you the shirt off their back if you need it. Nothing hurts worse than losing loved ones, but losing three at once is heartbreaking.”
The fundraiser went on to say that the elderly couple are loving and that Luke is ready to graduate high school and has his whole life ahead of him.
The grandparents were longtime members of the Emmanuel Baptist Church in the Newnan area, AJC.com reported.
Evelyn Hawk played the piano and Thomas was a “prayer warrior” for the 50-strong church.
Meanwhile Luke worked on the soundboard in church and loved playing “Leave With Nothing Left” by the Clark family, AJC.com reported.
Luke was about to graduate from East Coweta High School and was planning to attend Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College next semester.
The 18-year-old took part in a work-based learning program that enabled him to help out his grandparents in their gun shop.
“My grandparents were the kind of people who were such sweet and amazing people. You have shown love to everyone no matter what your background,” Walker wrote. “Luke, my cousin, was preparing to graduate in May and came from such an amazing family. No matter what, he made sure you had what you needed, no questions asked. To say they are missed is an understatement.
“No words can describe the pain my family is feeling. If you would like to donate in your heart, please do so. My family would appreciate any prayers, love and support you would be willing to give. Thanks in advance…” Walker added.